There’s only one thing to do when the heat and humidity hits – find the nearest rooftop bar and cool down with a cocktail or two. It might not have the same skyscrapers as New York or Tokyo, but there’s some amazing rooftop bars in Europe, with plenty of grand buildings for a cool new cocktail lounge to perch on.
Having a drink in one of the region’s best sky-high watering holes is a smart way to escape the heat and the crowds. Plus, you get a whole new viewpoint… and a tasty cocktail. With social distancing the way to go this summer, customers are seeking out airy, outside spaces.
With that in mind, we’ve rounded up the essential rooftop bars in Europe– from London to Luxembourg and pretty much everywhere in between.
Best rooftop bars in Europe 2021How do these rankings work?
This classy sky bar on the 22nd floor of the Radisson Blu Hotel Lietuva has unbeatable views of the entire city. There’s more than 70 cocktails to choose from, with a few funky twists.
This 8th floor rooftop bar at the Scandic Simonkenttä hotel is a badly-kept secret jewel in the city. With a Spanish vibe (expect sangria and tapas, as well as excellent cocktails), it’s made for socialising with friends and strangers alike. The bar even has a telescope and binoculars, so you can take a closer look at the city.
Mama Shelter has it all – it’s a cosy, wooden space in winter with a roaring fire, and a bright and airy terrace when the sun shines. Enjoy cocktails made at the statement pink marble island bar, or some great local beers. The rooftop bar is part of the hotel, which also impresses with its fun design.
Gaston is a temporary summer restaurant and bar with a beautiful view of the Ghent Skyline. There’s great cocktails, so you can enjoy them on the highest beach in the country. For sports fan, petanque courts are available if you want a bit of old school fun.
VIDOK has incredible views of the Vistula River and one of the most impressive historic buildings in Krakow, Wawel Castle. There’s classic cocktails and a great range of Polish beers to try. Sitting here on a summer’s day is bliss.
This quirky rooftop in Neukölln is many things: bar, club and beach. It’s also one of the latest hotspot of the Berlin clubbing scene. Head up on top of Neukölln Arcaden shopping centre to listen to the DJ’s tunes and watch the sun setting over the rooftops of Berlin.
Aloha is a bar, restaurant, coffee roaster and a terrace on the Maas River that focuses on sustainability and reducing waste. For example, they use the fruity berry from the coffee bean as the base for their ice tea. There’s regular events and an all-round great vibe.
Sit right here on the terrace of T-Anker with breathtaking views to sip on the best from the world of beers and gastronomy. Every week they change their beer menu; their 12-faucet has the best Czech and world specials to sample.
This beautiful 8th floor bar at the Hilton Molino Stucky Hotel on Giudecca is open to non-hotel guests, so everyone can enjoy the view. Indulge in a glass of Champagne, a pre-dinner aperitif or a delicious cocktail.
This terrace bar has quickly become one of the city’s most popular hotspots. It’s a sleek rooftop terrace on the ME Madrid Hotel in Plaza Santa Ana with panoramic views of the whole city. If you want a night under the stars, this is your spot.
At the top of ILLUM centre, you will find Copenhagen’s coolest rooftops, with a mix of bars and restaurants and the best views of the city. The rooftop restaurants serve everything from steaks to lobster, to cocktails and champagne.
This laidback café bar on the roof of Munich’s architecture faculty is a must-see when in Munich. You’ll have views of two domes of the Frauenkirche, a Bavarian landmark and Munich’s cathedral. The ideal spot for a coffee or (even better) a glass of vino.
As the name suggests, this popular club is on the 27th floor. The unique view of the city skyline makes the sunrises and sunsets remain in your memory for a long time. Their slogan is “Higher level of clubbing”, which guarantees weekly events and DJs for an unforgettable experience.
A luxury hotel in the city, head straight to the rooftop bar for panoramic views of the city to include in your Budapest Instagram snaps. Views of St Stephen’s Basilica go perfectly with a glass of vino.
Babel is a rooftop bar, garden and kitchen on top of the Bullitt Hotel, with panoramic city views across Belfast. Babel’s creative shrub cocktails use ingredients and garnishes inspired by its ‘living walls’, which are beautifully lush and contain over 300 plants. Watch bartenders pick fresh herbs straight from the walls to use in the drinks.
This fun rooftop on the top of the Bowling Crosly bowling alley, opens every summer for fresh cocktails and cold beers. It’s ran by Play Label Records, so expect House Music with bright sunshine, a nice bar, beach chairs, loads of cushions and chilled out vibes.
When it comes to sky-high drinks in London, there’s no better place than the Rooftop St. James. Set in the iconic Trafalgar Hotel, you’ll be greeted with stunning views of the surrounding such as Trafalgar Square, the London Eye and more. Then, there are the mouthwatering cocktails. Be sure to try their ‘botanic flame’ made with gin infused green cardamom, creme de mure and bitters.
When the sunshine hits in Dublin, this is the place to make a beeline for. Sophie’s is a pretty rooftop bar and terrace in the Dean hotel, with zesty cocktails (try the Mad Ting, which is served in soda can). Once the sun goes down, things get toasty with blankets and heaters.
This unique spacious terrace bar on the 9th floor of Sense Hotel has an endless feeling of sky and stars. There’s views of National Assembly and the Alexander Nevski Cathedral, as well as the mountains. As for drinks? There’s delicious Bulgarian wines and plenty of bubbles.
Tucked away on top of the Courthouse Hotel in Shoreditch, Upper Fifth Shoreditch is the perfect place to take in stunning panoramic views of London and enjoy some delicious bites and drinks. Whether you’re looking for a filling dinner or some fruity cocktails to kick off the evening, Upper Fifth Shoreditch fits the bill.
This hotel rooftop bar can boast that it’s the highest roof terrace in Amsterdam, with views of the city from 85 metres up high. It turns into a hot spot with locals and visitors alike each evening, with top bartenders slinging cocktails and good tunes. Be sure to keep an eye out for Floor17’s Rooftop Movie Nights programme in the summer months.
This extremely popular rooftop is an iconic part of the Shoreditch skyline, and its twice-yearly transformations are always stellar. Their bottomless brunch is a London institution, with DJs, drag hosts, games and cocktails. Spend the day here – and then stay for the night…
On the 18th floor of the Steam Hotel, this boujie bar is a hotspot for cocktails. On Fridays and Saturdays they are visited by famous and unknown DJs, who create a really fun atmosphere on the weekend.
BAR Vulkan is a restaurant and bar with outdoor seating on the Akerselva river, and a large roof terrace overlooking the city. It’s open from May to September and is ideal for after work drinks or brunch cocktails. It’s one of the best rooftop bars in Europe, hands down.
Situated high above the roofs of Berlin, this beach bar offers a wonderful view over the city. Huge amounts of sand is spread across the ground, which makes the holiday feeling complete when it’s sunny and warm out! Deck5 is a super place to enjoy a sunset with a glass of wine and some snacks.
Liebling is known as Budapest’s ‘hidden’ rooftop bar, which might mean there’s not much of a view, but the funky courtyard makes up for it.
There’s live music every night, a vast selection of quality local wines, classic cocktails, spirits and the best of the Hungarian and Italian cuisine – what more could you want?
Helicon Roofbar has magnificent views out to sea and across Finikoudes area. It’s part of a boutique apartment complex and has seriously cool boho vibes. Sitting here with a cocktail in hand and watching the sun set is what life is all about.
Head up to the 7th floor via an inner courtyard and spiral staircase for this sleek Parisian bar. Le Perchoir overlooks the city’s rooftops and has superb drinks and live DJs. In summer, it’s the perfect escape from the city heat, while fire drums in winter will keep you cosy.
Get ready for fine cocktails and jawdropping views from this bar on the 18th floor of the Sofitel Vienna Stephansdom.
But just take note: for a guaranteed place at the window, with the best view over the rooftops of Vienna, you need to book the 4-course LOFT menu and pay in advance. Worth it?
Another one of Athens best bars is the rooftop bar at Couleur Locale. This place is hip and trendy and is really popular among the locals. With amazing views of the Acropolis as the sun sets, enjoy live music bands and DJs playing on the weekends.
Come here for a beer and some classic bar food and just soak up the great ambience.
20 Stories is a rooftop restaurant, bar and terrace in the heart of Spinningfields. The rooftop terrace has fast become one of the must-be places in the city: it has has trees scaling two stories high and an outdoor lounge bar serving cocktails and craft beers.
Looking for a swanky bar in Malta? Hugo’s is the classiest spot for a sunset cocktail that will convince you to stay on after dark. With views of the clear blue waters and golden sands of St. Georges Bay, it’s clear why it’s one of the best rooftop bars in Europe.
La Terrazza Bar in Florence is a unique cocktail bar at the top floor of the medieval Consorti tower of Hotel Continentale. Sipping a glass or two of Prosecco here is a must – you’ll have views of Arno, Brunelleschi’s Dome, San Miniato, Palazzo Vecchio and Forte Belvedere.
Lemon Tree Sky Bar is spread over two floors – the 7th floor consists of a bar and a restaurant, while on the 8th floor there is a summer terrace with a view of the Old Town.There’s over 70 different kinds of exclusive vodkas to choose from, as well as great cocktails. They’re highly creative, served in toy-sized baths or clay bird pipes.
This is the place to come at sunset in Hamburg to get a great view of the city and enjoy quality drinks. Come early to ensure you get one of the seats around the window with your friends for the perfect view. One of the essential rooftop bars in Europe.
Herbārijs is a concept bar + café on the rooftop terrace of Galleria Riga. The concept? It’s all things inspired by the plant kingdom, with the bar itself somewhat of a lush ecosystem. You will find excellent cocktails that are strongly rooted in the world of aromatics and herbs, and great views.
The terrace of Ayre Hotel Rosellón is one of the best kept secrets among the terraces of Barcelona. It’s just one block from the Basilica of the Sagrada Familia, so expect the most incredible viewpoint of the Gaudi masterpiece. There’s great drinks and tapas, and cosy sun loungers too.
This is a rooftop bar taken to the next level: a bar on a cliff! Buža Bar lies just outside of Dubrovnik’s city walls and because of its popularity, you’ll often find many tourists here.
Best time to come here is right before sunset. Enjoy a drink of your choice as you watch the beautiful sunset at Buža Bar.
You’ll find one of the coolest yet laid-back rooftop bars in Stockholm. Commonly called SUS, this is a fantastic hang out-spot during warm summer evenings, with a killer view.
Whether it’s the DJs that play music, the movies on the screen or the cocktails in your hand, life is just better up here.
On the top floor of Bairro Alto Hotel you’ll find this beautiful terrace bar, which looks out over the winding streets of Lisbon’s coolest neighbourhood. It’s very popular, so come early if you want a prime sunset spot. Snuggle up for one of the best evenings you’ll have in Lisbon.
Since 2007 the rooftop spaces at Peckham Multi-Storey Car Park have been home to not-for-profit organisation Bold Tendencies. Every summer they open their doors to thousands of visitors and their first architecture project, Frank’s Cafe, serves up a menu of classic drinks and food.
Enjoy a drink 22 metres above the water in a former pirate radio and TV station. There’s several different decks to explore, including a restaurant. The top deck is a spectacular rooftop bar where you’ll have great panoramic views over the Amsterdam Houthaven.
Balcony Bar is a charming rooftop bar in the very centre of Prague, with a view of Národní třída and the National Theatre. It’s inspired by hip rooftop bars in cities such as New York or London, but with a historical Czech take on it.
For a drink at one of the most beautifully designed rooftop bars in Europe, Mama Shelter is the place to be. There’s slouchy bean bags, Foosball tables and magnificent views of the city below. Stop by on Sundays for their weekly burger parties.
PK Cocktail Bar is located in the central part of Santorini in Fira and directly overlooks the sea. From this outdoor bar, you can see one end of the island in Oia to the other end of the island in Akrotiri.
Relax and take in the views of the island as you sip on their refreshing cocktails, PK Mojito or Watermelon Margarita.
‘Nebotičnik’ is Slovenian for skyscraper, so you can be sure that this is among the best views from rooftop bars in Europe. It’s a great example of architecture between the two World Wars, with some of the most beautiful views of Ljubljana.
There’s residential flats on the lower floors, and the rooftop and club at the top.
This slick hotel bar has a panoramic terrace with views of Piazza Navona, St. Peter’s Basilica and the Pantheon that makes it a foolproof place for an Aperitivo for sunset. Reservations are pretty much essential, so plan ahead.
This super-chic bar proves that you don’t always need extreme heights to be considered one of the best rooftop bars in Europe. Patchwork is a Lebanese bar and restaurant in a colourful setting beside the sea. Vibrant handmade decor, sunset views and delicious cocktails add up to make this spot special.
This hugely popular bar has slick views of the city, with an herbalist and greenhouse vibe. The exact theme of the rooftop changes each summer; this year’s it’s kept things simple with a focus on English wine.
Want a bite to eat? What’s being grown next to you will most likely end up on your plate. There’s also regular events at the rooftop, such as astronomy on the roof or sunset yoga classes.